‘Little astronaut’ Daniel loves nothing more than gazing at the twinkling ‘stars’ glistening on his bedroom ceiling at night.

His whole universe is in his space-themed bedroom, where he can happily spend hours at a time listening to the sounds of zooming rockets and hearing about the celestial wonders beyond our world.

Daniel has an extremely rare, life-shortening condition called Mitochondrial Disease, which affects every aspect of his life. He’s unable to sit, walk or talk and he eats his meals through a tube.

While his condition means he’s unable to do things so many of us take for granted, he always spreads happiness, joy and laughter wherever he goes.

Daniel was named after a close family friend who sadly died before he had the chance to meet him, but his memory lives on.

“Those who are no longer with us, or we’re unable to be near, we call stars,” said Daniel’s grandma, Zoe.

“When he goes to bed at night we pick out stars and say they’ll be watching over you as you sleep. I think for children it’s such a comforting and a calming thing.

“He’s my little astronaut and he adores everything to do with space. He has planet bedding and lots of sensory lights which gleam like all the constellations.”

Since his initial diagnosis as a baby, inspirational Daniel has spent much of his short life in and out of hospitals. Even now, his family do not have a full diagnosis for what is an extremely complex condition.

Their lives are shadowed by uncertainty, so they focus all their energies into making the most of every moment together.

Thanks to our amazing supporters, we’ve been able to give Daniel and his family the chance to make precious memories together at Bluebell Wood.

“The time we’ve spent at Bluebell Wood has been genuinely life-changing for us,” said Zoe.

“We’ve visited for respite care and overnight stays and everyone is so lovely and supportive.

“Bluebell Wood is our normality. Even if it’s just sitting around a table, having a cup of tea and chat, that’s such a break for us.

“We know at Bluebell Wood the team understand Daniel’s complex needs and we know he’ll always be well looked after.

“Just to be able to laugh can be tough sometimes with all the uncertainty around Daniel’s condition. But that’s what we want to do. We want to laugh and make beautiful memories together.

“Bluebell Wood gives us that chance and it means the world to us.”



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